An historically important collection from the Hanoverian Royal Family the ancestors of todays British Royal Family will be offered in an auction of Antique Arms, Armour and Militaria in London on Wednesday, December 8 2010. The sale will be held at midday by Thomas Del Mar Ltd
(in association with Sothebys) at his saleroom at 25 Blythe Road, W14.
The collection, which is estimated to fetch in the region of £250,000 comprises 100 items such as armour, swords and halberds of the early renaissance as well as sporting guns, spears, swords and accoutrements from the Royal hunt. Among the highlights will be several items relating to George IV including a pair of 15-bore Hanoverian percussion sporting guns, which are estimated at £5,000-8,000; while an 18-bore example is expected to fetch £4,000-6,000 and a German 20-bore cape rifle is estimated at £3,000-5,000.
Thomas Del Mar commented: This is a remarkable sale in terms of the sheer quantity of pieces with Royal connections, ranging from the guns of George IV, William IV, the Maharajah of India and some extremely rare armour from the Prince Archbishops of Salzburg and other European Noble families. The sale of the Hanoverian Royal group is a particular highlight, the last sale being that held by Sothebys in 2005 that continues to stand as a world auction record for an ancestral collection in this field.
The Brunswick armourers reached their highest standing in the 16th Century when their reputation extended beyond the borders of Germany, with pieces being preserved in a number of European aristocratic and Royal collections. Among the items in the auction, also part of the Hanoverian collection is a magnificent two-hand processional sword of the guard from the distinguished Rustkammer of Julius, Duke of Brunswick, dated 1573 which is estimated at £10,000-15,000. Dating from 50 years later is an extremely rare and very interesting miniature example of a North German Pikemans armour, which was probably used by the makers to display their skills (estimate: £2,000-3,000).
Elsewhere in the sale; an interesting piece is being sold on behalf of Wootton St Lawrence Church, near Basingstoke in Hampshire. A rare and important North European Armet (peaked helmet) dating from 1500 and converted to funerary use in England in 1677 is expected to fetch £25,000-30,000. Until recently, the Wootton St Lawrence Armet hung over a bracket in the church of St Lawrence, and is marked with the initials T. H. of Sir Thomas Hooke, who died in 1677, whose monument it formed. It had been on loan to the Royal Armouries and on display at the Tower of London.
Other pieces with Hampshire connections in the sale include a fine cased 18-bore flintlock sporting gun made for the 4th Duke of Buccleuch and later given by him to his grandson, the 1st Lord Montagu of Beaulieu in 1813 (estimate: £9,500-10,500); while a rare cased 40-bore silver-mounted single trigger over and under flintlock pistol by Joseph Egg, 1814, which belonged to Sir Francis Thornhill Baring, 3rd Baronet, who was MP for Portsmouth from 1826 to 1865 carries an estimate of £7,000-10,000.
An interesting group of pieces with Scottish Connections will be offered in the auction. These include a an historic 9-bore English flintlock fowling piece presented by William, Marquess of Lothian to Archibald Douglas, Third Marquess, by John Smart and dating from 1710 (estimate: £6,000-9,000); while a fine Scottish silver-hilted presentation sword, given to Captain Alexander Ewing by the non-commissioned Officers and Privates of the Glasgow Yeomanry Cavalry is expected to fetch £2,000-3,000.
A fine presentation sword given to Major Robert Torrens by the Non Commissioned Officers, Drummers and Privates of The Royal Marines in token of their admiration of his bravery is estimated at £15,000-20,000. Made by Henry Tatham, Sword Cutler to the King, the sabre is one of two swords presented to Torrens, who was an Ulsterman, born around 1780, in recognition of his services in the defence of the Baltic island of Anholt against Danish forces in March 1811.
Within the Militaria section is a good selection of uniforms and cap-badges; however of note is a fine and very rare Grenadierss cap from the Honourable Artillery Company dating from 1714 (estimate: £20,000-30,000).
Among other pieces in the sale with a Royal Connection is a fine Swedish Royal Sword of Honour, which was given by Karl XIV Johan, King of Sweden between 1818-44 and is estimated at £10,000-15,000. Another Swedish Presentation Sword, dating from earlier in Karl XIV Johans life, when he was Crown Prince Charles John Bernadotte dates from 1813-18 and is estimated at £5,000-7,000.
Within the armour section, are several pieces relating to the Austrian Royal family. A fine and rare late 16th century Venetian Parade shield made for the bodyguard of Wolf Dietrich von Raitenau, Prince Archbishop of Salzburg is estimated at £8,000-12,000, while a composite South German infantry half armour, dating from the 3rd quarter of the 16th century, and stamped with the Vienna City Arsenal mark is expected to fetch £15,000-20,000.
Among the firearms is a very fine cased .500 calibre percussion smoothbore patent double rifle by Charles Lancaster made for Raja Takht Sinh, Maharajah of Jodhpur, dated 1865 which is expected to fetch £20,000-30,000.
Sunday, December 5 - 12 noon to 4pm
Monday, December 6 - 10am to 7pm
Tuesday, December 7 - 10am to 5pm